Germans must now fear, not only them, but a shot from behind, a
treacherous stab in the back."
Russian planes also dropped leaflets containing similar slogans urging
the population to revolt. " The time has arrived for action/5 " for yours
and for our freedom " (the latter phrase had appeared on the ancient
Polish banners carried during the insurrection against Tsardom in 1831),
and repeated Stalin's assurance of a " strong and independent Poland.35
Leaflets such as these were dropped as far as Warsaw on May 12-13,1943$
when Russian bombers were once more battering that city.
The Allied Press, it is worth noting, did not share the opinion of the
Soviets over the question of a revolt in those countries under German
occupation, and on this point the Soviets received no support whatever.
How far this opinion differed from that held by the other members
of the Allied camp was evident when even Dr. Benes, who had placed his
hopes one hundred per cent, in Russia and obediently followed every
turn and twist of the Soviet policy, had not dared to risk proclaiming a
rebellion in Bohemia, realising the hopelessness of such a call, and the
inevitable weakening of any position which he hoped to possess in that
part of the world. His recommendation to that country of " watchful
waiting >J was abruptly classed in the Soviet Press as " sentimental slush."
But in spite of the strong invectives of that Press against him, even after
he had concluded the treaty with Russia, Benes refused to send out the
call for an uprising in Czecho-Slovakia until the Soviet armies in their
offensive had reached the borders of that country. Moscow did not
herself believe in the outcome of her appeals for revolt, but nevertheless
they were made in order to present the Soviet Union as the chief actor in
this great drama of battle being enacted in Europe , . . And as its saviour !
It would, she judged, repay her in the long run. According to the Kremlin
the c bourgeois Polish Government (like the others residing in London)
were prosecuting their capitalist interests and were not active enough in
the fight against the German invader/ while the Soviets were prepared to
rally the most c patriotic' elements round their e representatives ' in
Poland and in the other countries as well and to c fight/ From this theory
sprang those t patriotic* slogans employed by Soviet organisations
throughout Europe, and the outcry for c immediate activity' and * no
delay/ But this theory was to fail completely as far as Poland was
concerned; the Russian agents themselves had to adopt a waiting attitude.
When the Russians had begun to attain a success on the front in 1943,
the Communist agitators in the Eastern territories of Poland were
strengthened by these so-called partisans. On their appearance, the
Commander of the Home Army forwarded the suggestion that they
should join the framework of his organisation but form, if they so wished,
separate units. His proposal met 'with a blank refusal. These men
kept themselves mainly in small groups, eight to sixteen well-armed bands